If you're like most people planning a wedding, you've been dreaming of the process ever since you started dating your soon-to-be spouse. You've created a picture-perfect vision about the style of attire you'll don, the venue you'll celebrate at, the blooms you'll choose, the song you'll share your first dance to and so on. While having a clear plan about your wedding day is natural, it's important to know the facts about the negative effects that the wedding industry has on the environment. According to GreenBrideGuide.com, each of the 2.5 million annual American weddings will produce an average of 62 tons of carbon dioxide and 400-600 tons of garbage. When you consider that all of this harmful waste is created from just one day, it can change your perspective on the idea of the perfect wedding. But one of the biggest misconceptions about eco-friendly weddings is that you have to sacrifice beauty for greener and more sustainable options. However, we're here to tell you that you can still have the wedding of your dreams while being eco-friendly. We've created a helpful guide that provides you with 6 Traditional Element Alternatives for Eco-Friendly Weddings. These tips will show you how to make easy changes to your wedding plans to make them more environmentally friendly, without giving up the traditional beauty of wedding day trends. Wedding Rings Found on Pinterest via brilliantearth.com Your wedding rings are the one element of your wedding day that will last forever (besides the memories, of course!). Make them sustainable by buying rings that are ethically sourced and made from 100% recycled metals like gold and silver. Since eco-jewelry isn't the norm for wedding rings, we happen to think it makes them even more unique and special. If it's any indication on whether these types of rings are fabulous, celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow, Reece Witherspoon and Kerry Washington are known to be big fans. Paper & Stationery Found on botanicalpaperworks.com With all of the gorgeous and unique stationery options available for brides and grooms today, there's no reason why the amount of wedding waste can't be minimized. One of the best ways to really impress guests while remaining eco-friendly is to use seed paper stationery. From Save-the-Dates, Invitations, Place Cards, Menu Cards, Thank-You's and more, Botanical Paperworks' seed paper is at its best when it's used for weddings. Not only are they unique and offer a different texture and feel than regular paper products, but they're made from 100% post-consumer materials and are embedded with seeds that grow wildflowers when planted. And for the most eco-friendly option available, consider using Seal and Send Wedding Invitations, which require no envelopes at all. Get more information about them here. Instead of creating waste, your guests will have the opportunity to actually benefit the environment with the use of your wedding stationery. This seed paper stationery is an experience that you'll love sharing with all of your guests. Bridal Beauty Found on Pinterest via frostedpetticoatblog.com Suffice to say that every single bride wants to look her most radiant and dazzling on her wedding day, and you don't have to sacrifice your bridal beauty in order to be eco-friendly. One of the most treasured traditions in a bride's wedding is choosing a beautiful and flattering wedding dress, and it's also one of the hardest to give up. Although you don't hear much about it anymore, reusing your mother or grandmother's wedding dress is a beautiful and classic way to add a touch of vintage elegance to your wedding. This will save you hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars on wedding costs and will help reduce the amount of waste. But if you really want to buy your own, try to purchase one that you can rewear at a later date or donate it to another bride after your wedding. Flowers & Decor Found on Pinterest via itakeyou.co.uk Floral arrangements and decorations are one of the best and most beautiful aspects to any wedding. Whether you get married in the middle of February or on a balmy day in July, your flowers play an important role in the overall look and feel of your wedding. To make an eco-friendly and budget-friendly choice on your blooms, choose seasonal flowers and buy them locally. Not only will this cut costs, but it'll help the environment by reducing the amount of the carbon footprint from imported flowers delivered by planes, trains and trucks. If you get married in the spring, choose tulips, daffodils, cherry blossoms or peonies. If you're having a summer wedding, choose sunflowers, freesia's and hydrengas. For a fall wedding, choose dahlia's, roses, and lillies. And if you're having a winter wedding, choose orchids, roses, gardenias and classic carnations. And to add a gorgeous touch of eco-friendly beauty to your tabletops and centerpieces, consider upcycling items you already have. These transformations are both environmentally friendly and completely stylish. Take a look at this post for lots of fabulous ideas. Wedding Favors Found on botanicalpaperworks.com While wedding favors seem like a sweet idea, they're often forgotten and usually make a bee-line for the garbage can shortly after the party is over. Not only are unused products and gifts expensive for the wedding party, but it's a tremendous amount of unneccesary garbage produced. Instead of giving your guests things that they don't want or won't use, treat them to unique and environmentally friendly products like seed paper wedding favors. Available in customizable bookmarks, notepads, confetti and more, our seed paper favors are stylish and tree-free alternatives to traditional wedding favors. Not only will your guests love the idea and feel of the textured biodegradable paper, but they'll be excited to plant them and grow wildflowers in memory of your wedding. Food & Drink Found on Pinterest via thekitchn.com This is truly one of the best parts of any wedding, bar none. Make your first meal as a new family as eco-friendly as possible by asking your caterers to incorporate as many local and organic ingredients as possible. Not only will these fresh ingredients taste better, but by buying local you'll be helping to support the economy. If you're looking for more information about eco-friendly weddings, take a look at this Eco-Friendly Weddings Inspiration Board for lots of great ideas. Do you want even more stylish wedding ideas? Check out our entire Inspiration Boards page - we're always getting inspired by trends in the world of weddings! Looking for more wedding stationery? We have tons to choose from including reply cards, menus, favors, seal and send wedding invitations and more! All printed on quality eco-friendly seed paper that grows flowers when planted. Like what you see on our blog? Join our mailing list to receive emails with freebies, projects, coupons, green living tips and decor ideas and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.